Posted May 27, 2012on:
This article begins with an intriguing question: When is a test not a test? It cites a tweet by @Scott_E_Benson:
The future of testing will be tests that students, teachers and parents do not think of as tests.—
Scott Benson (@Scott_E_Benson) April 26, 2012
Then it dances around the benefits and pitfalls of tests before suggesting how one might assess and evaluate without the tests that we are most familiar with.
It suggests gamification and gaming strategies. It suggests portfolios, self-assessment, and peer accountability. It suggests measures that are more progressive than the quality control tests that are relevant only for the industrial age.
Thinking gamers might tell you that they are being tested all the time but the tests do not feel like tests. That is when a test is not like a test.
A game can be pure fantasy, be based on reality, or be a hybrid like the one featured above. Unlike a most video games, the game does not have obvious quests and thus mirrors much of life.
It is also been said that, unlike school, life throws tests at you whether or not you are ready. When that happens, you experience a knowledge gap and you need to problem-solve. That makes the seeking, analysis, and use of information relevant.
Despite the surprises that life throws at you, this form of insidious testing seems natural. School-based testing does not.
Like other creatures in the animal kingdom, we start learning by play. Why not be tested by play?